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Graduate Certificate in Public Procurement and Contract Management Program Gains Accreditation

On the heels of Old Dominion University's first-ever Public Procurement and Contract Management Symposium April 25, the school's Graduate Certificate in Public Procurement and Contract Management (GCPPCM) program is basking in international recognition.

The program, less than three years old, has been accredited by the Global Standards Board of the International Federation of Purchasing and Supply Management (IFPSM). Stephen Gordon, a faculty member in the Department of Urban Studies and Public Administration of ODU's College of Business and Public Administration (CBPA), and director of the GCPPCM, said ODU is the first college or university in the Western Hemisphere and the second program anywhere in the world to achieve this level of accreditation.

"Aside from its obvious confirmation of academic credibility, this accreditation is part of the college's strategy to market our procurement certificate worldwide. Much credit has been earned and deserved by Stephen Gordon for his tireless effort to support our program," said Gil Yochum, dean of the CBPA.

"I'd like to also thank the PA department and Assistant Dean Connie Merriman for their determined effort and support in attaining this accreditation."

Michael Bevis, a member of the Global Standards Board and an adjunct faculty member for the GCPPCM, announced the award during the symposium April 25, an event which itself also testified to the growth of public procurement as a discipline at ODU.

ODU President John R. Broderick gave welcome remarks at the event, which was attended by 170 participants. In addition to speakers and panelists, including many of the leaders in the field, attendees heard keynote speaker Martha Johnson, former head of the General Services Administration and author of "On My Watch."

The IFPSM is the union of 45 national and regional purchasing associations worldwide, which have around 250,000 purchasing professionals as members. The federation facilitates the development and distribution of knowledge to elevate and advance the procurement profession, thus favorably impacting the standard of living of citizens worldwide through improved business practices.

Created in 2011, the GCPPCM is one of the first in the country created specifically to teach skills to students and professionals in the complex areas of purchasing and contracting for public organizations.

Since its inception, the program has presented certificates to more than 20 graduate students, many as part of their Master of Public Administration program. These students have gone on to procurement and contracting jobs with public entities around the region and beyond.

Admission to the certificate program is open to anyone who has completed at least a bachelor's degree at an accredited institution. Applicants enroll as non-degree graduate students through ODU's Office of Graduate Admissions. Those who plan to earn the certificate as part of their M.P.A. program must apply and be admitted to the M.P.A. program. For more information about the program, see: http://bpa.odu.edu/uspa/academics/procurement.shtml.

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